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Old 12-13-2002, 08:06 PM   #1
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Thumbs up It IS an Airstream! Tradewinds Landyacht!

Wow, I'm so excited! We drove back to find this old trailer I spoted a couple weeks ago, and sure enough, it is an Airstream. It was raining, and almost dark (wherever did the day go?) but I got a few decent pictures. The two identifying panels beside the door read "Tradewinds" and "Land Yacht," but I couldn't see a date. However, the license plate was 1971, so I know it's at least 32 years old. It looks like someone retired it a while ago and was using it beside a river for a summer home. It is sitting in a flood zone, and I'm sure it's been flooded many times over. It's chained solidly to a big tree. I couldn't get inside because it was raining and the handle was slippery and also broken. I'll bet it won't be hard to identify. I'm going to try to post some of the pictures here. I know how to post one, but I'm not sure how to do more than one at a time.

Oh well, here goes! Let me know what you think, and if you think it's worth tring to find out who owns it. From the shape it's in, I'd be willing to bet someone would almost pay ME to haul it away.

Cherie

Here's a link (I hope) to an album I just threw together of the pictures I took tonight.

Old Airstream
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Old 12-13-2002, 08:30 PM   #2
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It IS an Airstream! Tradewinds Landyacht!

Greetings Cherie!

I believe that the TradeWind that you have discovered must be a late 1950s to 1960 model. I believe that the jalousied window beside the door began sometime around 1957 and ended with the 1964 Model year. I know by the door handle that it is not a 1964. I suspect that it is a 1960, but it could possibly be a year or two earlier as I believe that a different style door handle was utilized for 1961-1964. Also, if it is a single axle, it would almost have to be prior to 1964 as most TradeWinds began being equipped with tandem axles in 1964 if my information is correct.

If there isn't major damage to the skin, and the windows are in-tact, the trailer may actually be restorable. Even if it weren't restorable, it would likely yield many valuable parts to someone restoring a similar trailer.

Kevin
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Old 12-13-2002, 09:12 PM   #3
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Unhappy Okay, now should I do?

It is a single axle. Also, I noticed that there is no sign of an awning attachment anywhere. Gee, I wish it had been lighter and nicer weather out. Oh well, I'll have to go back again and take a better look.

I think the entire skin is in decent shape, aside from some dents and scratches that don't seem to have actually torn through. It was hard to tell, really. The worst thing is most likely the flood damage to the interior. It must be a real mess.

So now what should I do? What is something like a 1960 Tradwind in yucky shape worth, if I should be lucky enough to find the rightful owner? What should I offer him/her? And if I hauled it away (providing the tires are still decent), what is the best thing to do with it? I don't have the energy or the expertise to restore it myself. Should I just post here that I have it and let it go to the highest bidder? Seems like I should at least get something for my trouble, doesn't it?

Any ideas?

Cherie
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Old 12-13-2002, 09:32 PM   #4
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If it has been sitting in the same place for 30 years and flooded several times it probably won't be worth much more than aluminum and glass parts. I would look at the frame to start, it might not even be towable. Figure on a minimum of tires, brakes, and bearings to get it out of there.

If the interior is damaged from flooding, the floor has to be gone. That means pulling the shell to replace it, a major job. There have to be a few around that have passable interiors with bad floors, these would be worth trying to restore. On this one you have to then rebuild the whole interior and somehow deal with the moisture damage within the walls. There will doubtless be frame repair to do. You are looking at a major investment in time and money. There is a point in everything's life when it becomes a part donor. This one sounds like it may be there. You have to decide if the time trying to track down the owner or property owner and then getting it roadworthy enough to move is worth what you are going to get out of it. It's a neat thing to find and a shame what happened to it, but I personally wouldn't spend much time or money trying to rescue it.

John
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Old 12-13-2002, 09:33 PM   #5
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Smile Oh I almost forgot...

Here's the identifying plaque that's right next to the door. There are actually two plaques...one says Tradewind, the other says Land Yacht.

Cherie
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Old 12-13-2002, 10:58 PM   #6
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It IS an Airstream! Tradewinds Landyacht!

Those badges make me think that it is likely between 1959 and 1961. I believe that the larger badge was redesigned about 1962 and I don't believe the smaller badges were used after 1961. If you decide that you want to track the owner down, the DMV or maybe even the county treasurer might be able to provide the last registered owner's name based upon the 1970s license tag number and/or the coach's serial number if it can still be deciphered.

Kevin
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